Daily News on Southeast Asia – 20 May 2024

Every weekday, ISEAS Library collates articles relevant to Southeast Asia and special topics in line with the research interests of the ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute. To view articles behind paywalls, please visit the Library during its operating hours.

To receive this and other ISEAS Library content in your email, please subscribe to our mailing list.

Image by beglib on Morguefile.

Today’s issue includes the following commentaries and citations attributed to ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute and its researchers. You can click on the links to go to the articles directly.

Brunei | Cambodia | Indonesia | Laos | Malaysia | Myanmar | Philippines | Singapore | Thailand | Timor-Leste | Vietnam | ASEAN / Southeast Asia | Asia PacificEast/South China Sea | Climate Change/Environment | Media, Technology & Society | Others


1. Domestic matter: Gov’t will not turn Funan Techo Canal project into regional or international issue
Van Roeun
Khmer Times, 20 May 2024
2. Cambodia’s US$1.7 billion China – backed canal sparked unease. Here’s how it can soothe concerns
Pou Sothirak and Him Raksmey
South China Morning Post, 18 May 2024
3. Are cyber – scam operations widespread in Cambodia?
[link to 76 page United States Institute for Peace (USIP) report “Transnational Crime in Southeast Asia: A Growing Threat to Global Peace and Security”]
The Nation, 18 May 2024
4. Cambodia’s Funan Techo Canal Marks a Loss for Vietnam and a Win for China
Rane Worldview, 16 May 2024


5. Analysis: Big government means bigger budget. Can Prabowo deliver?
Tenggara Strategics
Jakarta Post, 20 May 2024
6. Jokowi, Ma’ruf not invited to PDI-P national meeting
Jakarta Post, 20 May 2024
7. State audit agency draws ire for allegedly covering up irregularities
Dio Suhenda
Jakarta Post, 19 May 2024
8. Golkar to back Khofifah’s reelection bid for East Java governor
Alifia Sekar
Jakarta Post, 19 May 2024
9. Steep costs, red tape deter independent regional candidates
Dio Suhenda
Jakarta Post, 19 May 2024
10. Musk, Indonesian health minister, launch Starlink for health sector
Stefanno Sulaiman
Reuters, 19 May 2024
11. Lifelong visa for Indonesian diaspora can be a major breakthrough
Tunggul Tobing
Jakarta Post, 18 May 2024
12. China’s high – speed railway in Indonesia is adding trips – but debt could hold back the gravy train
Ralph Jennings
South China Morning Post, 18 May 2024
13. Indonesia’s free school lunch initiative stirs positive change despite cost concerns
Linda Yulisman
Straits Times, 18 May 2024


Bernama, 20 May 2024
15. Malaysia’s Out-Of-Sync Federal And State Elections: The Good, The Bad, And The Untimely
[This article was published by ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute as ISEAS Perspective 2024/34]
Francis E. Hutchinson
Eurasia Review, 20 May 2024
16. Explaining Bumi policy, UiTMC V-C says 60pc students in bottom income group because M40 now poorer
John Bunyan
Malay Mail Online, 20 May 2024
17. A new phase of economic growth for Malaysia but uncertainties remain
Paolo Casadio and Geoffrey Williams
Malay Mail Online, 20 May 2024
18. PN perlu cipta naratif baharu [PN needs to create a new narrative]
Mohd. Hafiz Mutalib
Utusan Malaysia, 20 May 2024
19. Decline of the ringgit: Amid strain on people, businesses, is there hope for a rebound?
[Link to 47-minute video: Why Malaysia’s Currency Has Been Falling: Can The Ringgit Recover?]
Faith Leong & Zainudin Afandi
CNA, 19 May 2024
20. Sanusi’s apology
Ravin Palanisamy
Malaysian Insight, 19 May 2024
21. Weak Bersatu could cost Pas votes if it stays in PN’
Amalia Azmi
New Straits Times, 19 May 2024
22. Sabah Umno expects to form coalition ahead of next state polls
Free Malaysia Today, 18 May 2024
23. Umno and DAP – warm on top, cold below
Joceline Tan
Star, 18 May 2024
24. Monopoly, monopsony, civil servants’ wage hikes, inflationary pressures & pensions reforms
Jason Loh
EMIR Research, 17 May 2024
25. Malaysian Brain Drain: Voices Echoing Through Research
Rais Hussin
EMIR Research, 16 May 2024


26. Myanmar: If sanctions aren’t the solution, what is?
Morten B. Pedersen
Interpreter, 20 May 2024
27. Myanmar’s Rakhine state engulfed by conflict as rebels claim victory
Gwen Robinson
Nikkei Asia, 20 May 2024
28. Finding Marwi in Loikaw
Andrew Nachemson
Frontier Myanmar, 17 May 2024
29. ‘No Agreement’ Between Myanmar Junta and Brotherhood Alliance in Latest Peace Talks
Saw Lwin
Irrawaddy, 17 May 2024
30. Japan’s ‘Special Relationship’ With Myanmar Has Abetted Decades of Military Rule
Bertil Lintner
Irrawaddy, 17 May 2024


31. The Luzon Economic Corridor: A Badly-Needed Win For the US in Southeast Asia?
Kevin Chen
Diplomat, 20 May 2024
32. South China Sea: why the Philippines needs a Chinese energy deal
Tim Daiss
South China Morning Post, 20 May 2024
33. Western Command chief linked to leaked recording replaced
Agence France-Presse
Manila Times, 19 May 2024
34. Marcos’ new human rights ‘super body’: abuse window-dressing in the Philippines?
Sam Beltran
South China Morning Post, 19 May 2024
35. Seeing China reds under the beds in the Philippines
Asia Times, 18 May 2024
36. Marcos, Sotto parties to forge alliance for ‘genuine unity’
Javier Joe Ismael
Manila Times, 18 May 2024
37. The Philippines’ $35 Billion Military Modernization Plan, Explained
James Guild
Diplomat, 17 May 2024
38. Japan and the Philippines Increase Their Focus on Island Defense
Christopher Woody
Diplomat, 17 May 2024


39. The Singapore-China ties Lawrence Wong inherits from Lee Hsien Loong
Dylan Loh
South China Morning Post, 19 May 2024
40. PM Baharu SG [SG’s new PM]
Berita Mediacorp, 16 May 2024


41. Businesses up in smoke
Bangkok Post, 20 May 2024
42. Land reform dangers
Bangkok Post, 20 May 2024
43. Thaksin Shinawatra and the Rise of Political Nihilism in Thailand
Tita Sanglee
Diplomat, 20 May 2024
44. Push to sell old rice raises questions
Bangkok Post, 19 May 2024
45. More than 60% Thais support relisting marijuana as a drug: NIDA poll
The Nation, 19 May 2024
46. Minimum wage hike ‘will benefit migrant workers more than Thais’
The Nation, 19 May 2024
47. Maybe it’s time to move on
Bangkok Post, 18 May 2024
48. Thai govt’s bid to sell old rice brings back bad memories linked to Yingluck
Tan Hui Yee
Straits Times, 17 May 2024
49. Senators petition Constitutional Court on Srettha continuing as PM
The Nation, 17 May 2024


50. General To Lam nominated as President, Vice NA Chairman as top legislator
VietNamNet, 19 May 2024
51. Exclusive: Vietnam forfeits billions of dollars in foreign aid amid anti-graft freeze, document says
Francesco Guarascio and Khanh Vu
Reuters, 17 May 2024
52. Will Vietnam’s anti-corruption drive usher in pro-China hardliners and impact US ties?
South China Morning Post, 17 May 2024

ASEAN/Southeast Asia

53. ASEAN needs stronger home-grown institutions to lock in regional unity
East Asia Forum, 20 May 2024
54. 对华合作助东南亚释放“基建红利” [Cooperation with China helps Southeast Asia release “infrastructure dividends”]
环球网, 20 May 2024
55. ASEAN unity key to dealing with East Asia’s strategic dilemma
Joseph Liow, Nanyang Technological University
East Asia Forum, 19 May 2024
56. IN FOCUS: China is set to wield bigger ‘carrots and sticks’ over Taiwan. Here’s how it may impact ASEAN states
Wong Woon Shin & Lakeisha Leo
CNA, 18 May 2024
57. Malaysia is gearing up to propel Asean forward through enhanced relations with Europe
Chris Humphrey
Edge Markets, 17 May 2024
58. Small but Telling Shifts
[This article is extracted from Comparative Connections: A Triannual E-Journal of Bilateral Relations in the Indo-Pacific, Vol. 26, No. 1, May 2024.]
Catharin Dalpino
Pacific Forum, 17 May 2024
59. Strategic Dynamism: 50th Anniversary of Relations and New Security Ties
[This article is extracted from Comparative Connections: A Triannual E-Journal of Bilateral Relations in the Indo-Pacific, Vol. 26, No. 1, May 2024. ]
Kei Koga
Pacific Forum, 17 May 2024
60. Southeast Asia & Japan – The good, the bad & the ugly
RIETI, 16 May 2024

Asia Pacific

61. Will China Succeed in Creating an Asian Security Order?
Richard Ghiasy and Jagannath Panda
Diplomat, 18 May 2024
62. Chinese ships swarm Julian Felipe Reef
Franco Jose C. Barona
Manila Times, 20 May 2024

East/South China Sea

63. Japan, Philippines Finalize Largest Maritime Security Pact Days After Chinese CG, Militia Aggression In SCS
Ritu Sharma
EuraAsian Times, 18 May 2024
64. China Coast Guard: We can detain trespassers
Jane Bautista
Philippine Daily Inquirer, 18 May 2024
65. Philippines blasts Beijing’s new trespass rule in contested waters as ‘illegal’
Camille Elemia
Radio Free Asia, 17 May 2024
66. South China Sea: Philippine senators launch new project to strengthen presence on disputed Pag-asa island
Jeoffrey Maitem
South China Morning Post, 17 May 2024

Climate Change/Environment

67. Indonesia’s near-term coal reliance could grow with Prabowo’s nickel focus
Sharanya Pillai
Business Times, 20 May 2024
68. Time to relook how far palm oil leads to indirect land use change
Hong Wai Onn
Edge Markets, 20 May 2024

69. Malaysia pulls the plug on Formula E
Frankie D’Cruz
Free Malaysia Today, 20 May 2024
70. Japan and ASEAN to craft auto strategy to counter China’s EVs
Riho Nagao
Nikkei Asia, 20 May 2024
71. NTS Bulletin May 2024: Climate Maladaptation: Climate Action and Challenges in Southeast Asia
Julius Cesar Trajano
S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, 20 May 2024
72. Sarawak forest carbon projects face pushback over Indigenous land rights
Samantha Ho
Eco-Business, 19 May 2024
73. Saving the Mekong: The arduous battle to sustain life along South-east Asia’s longest river
Tan Hui Yee & Lim Min Zhang
Straits Times, 18 May 2024
74. Energy transition is a ‘priority’ for Indonesia, but coal sector must be protected, say officials
Robin Hicks
Eco-Business, 17 May 2024
75. Sharp declines in critical mineral prices mask risks of future supply strains as energy transitions advance
[Link to 282-page PDF document: The Global Critical Minerals Outlook 2024]
IEA, 17 May 2024

Media, Technology & Society

76. Authors’ new book exposes role of disinformation in political dialogue
Elill Easwaran
Free Malaysia Today, 18 May 2024

Best effort has been made to ensure the external links provided are valid as of collation. We welcome your suggestions to help us improve this service. Please take a moment to give us your feedback via our feedback form.

In making materials available online, the ISEAS Library always does its best to meet the requirements of copyright and other laws. If you have concerns about any material that ISEAS Library has placed online and want to suggest that it be taken down, please contact us at libcir@iseas.edu.sg.